Get Yourself Ready for Back to School!

The start of the school year doesn’t just represent a fresh start for your children; it also means a return to normalcy for harried moms and dads.

Many of you have probably given up your regular routines for the last three months to adapt to the more free form summer schedules of your children. Now it is time to get everyone (including you) back on a schedule. It also represents an excellent time for you to schedule some much needed time for yourself.

Alicia on ‘Summer Finale’

‘One thing I like to do is end the summer with a family get together. It is a nice ritual for shifting from our summer mindset to a back to school/back to business mindset. While the routine is a bit different each year, the goal is the same: have one more big celebration of sunshine and fun before we move on to excitement of starting a new school year. This year we are having a summer beach party where we will barbeque burgers and corn on the cob, make homemade ice cream, and do lots of swimming. When the day is done, we will then give everyone a small trinket for the start of school. This year it is going to be monogrammed pencil cases, which is just a small token to celebrate the nine exciting months to come.’

Sarah on ‘Back to School for Mom’

‘With the kids back in school, there is inevitably a new routine, new sports teams, and new after school activities. To stay on top of it all, I recommend scheduling quiet time to sit down with everyone’s schedules and see what you need to do to keep things running smoothly. Think about what kind of chauffeuring you need to do and set up car pools where it makes sense. Look ahead to likely crunch times where you will need extra help and hire babysitters in advance, so you’re not out of luck when you need it most.

Finally, plan at least one family night a week. I’ve learned the hard way: unless it’s scheduled, it doesn’t happen. Last but not least, schedule in some time for you. So many parents often have to give up things like gym time during the summer. So make sure you plan it into your week of appointments and activities.’

Here are three ideas on how to make the most out of Back to School Time:

#1: Make Back to School Resolutions
Why wait for the New Year to make resolutions? Make just three commitments to things you will do now to improve your life. Whether it is eating better, exercising, or spending time with friends, now is the perfect time to take care of you.

#2: Plan 16
Set up a 16 month calendar (September, 2006 — December, 2007) and put in all of the key holidays, vacations, sports tournaments, etc…for everyone in the family While planning out this far may seem like overkill, it will get you in the habit of thinking about any conflicts or important plans early on.

#3: Check Off Check Ups

Back to school is a great time to schedule annual doctor appointments for everyone in the family. That way, you’ll have taken care of what’s really important before things get too hectic. Don’t forget to include dentist appointments and eye check ups for the family and other important tests like mammograms and colonoscopies for the adults.